Watershed Planner

Chisago Soil & Water Conservation District
Jobs - Full Time
North Branch, MN

Chisago Soil & Water Conservation District

Job Announcement Watershed Planner – Lower St. Croix

Position Location: Chisago Soil and Water Conservation District – North Branch, MN

Position Status: Full-time (current funding is for three years) with benefits

Starting Salary: Dependent Upon Qualifications

Application Deadline: September 14, 2018, 4:00 PM


Chisago Soil & Water Conservation District is accepting applications for a Watershed Planner for the Lower St. Croix watershed. The main responsibility of this position will be working one-on-one with landowners in developing and implementing comprehensive natural resource management plans to conserve our natural resources within the Lower St. Croix River watershed. Overall supervision received from the District Administrator and with input from all SWCDs in the Lower St. Croix River watershed. Technical support from the NRCS District Conservationist in the Lower St. Croix River watershed.


Primary Duties and Responsibilities: This position works to prioritize data from completed resource inventories and assessments to promote and implement Best Management Practices throughout Lower St. Croix River watershed, with emphasis on agricultural landowners and producers. Task include:

  • Develops comprehensive natural resource management plans with landowners (emphasis on working with farmers).
  • Understands the Federal, State and local cost-share and incentive programs, and can explain these programs to landowners.
  • Coordinates and meets regularly with all SWCDs within the Lower St Croix River watershed.
  • Develops and implements outreach and plan development in close collaboration with partner SWCDs to ensure seamless implementation of technical assistance and cost-share (from Federal, State, and Local funding sources) delivery.
  • Advises and understands the installation and maintenance of conservation best management practices.
  • Understands and promotes precision agriculture, GIS tools, and technology in developing innovative solutions to the complex issues associated with natural resources management, including nutrient management.
  • Prepares records and reports summarizing work accomplished.
  • Performs technical work according to the NRCS Field Office Technical Guide, independently with minimal supervision.
  • Can supervise and train SWCD and NRCS field staff when given project responsibility.
  • Promotes the conservation philosophy of the SWCD, as outlined in the local plans.
  • Works with units of government and private industry for planning purposes in land use and conservation of natural resources.
  • Performs other related duties as directed by the District Administrator and/or the District Board.

Qualifications and Experience: Prefer a Bachelors degree with a major field of study in agronomy, soil science or related field of biological, physical, or earth science. Course work in soil science, agronomy, environmental studies, and natural resources management subjects are desirable. Must be able to follow instructions, keep detailed records, analyze data, prepare reports and perform other tasks related to the job. Qualified applicants will be self-motivated, able to show a commitment to high quality work, and complete projects on schedule while dealing with diverse audiences. Effective communication and presentation skills, in both formal and informal situations, are very important. Good computer skills are needed. Must have a valid driver's license and good driving record.

  • USDA Certified Conservation Planner status is preferred.
  • Strong interpersonal skills; capable of working effectively with individuals in the public, private, and government sectors.
  • Physically capable to carry heavy equipment over rough terrain, and the ability to perform outdoor work throughout the year.
  • Applicant must possess the ability to communicate clearly in both oral and written forms.
  • Ability to take direction, to work independently with a minimum of supervision, and to set priorities and practice time management.
  • Familiarity with programs and procedures at the state and federal levels related to natural resource management and conservation.
  • Should have working knowledge of NRCS Standards and Specifications.
  • Should have knowledge in NRCS hydrologic models and hydrology modeling.
  • Experience with a desktop computer and MS office computer software, ArcView GIS software, and general office equipment.
  • Self-motivated: able to work with minimal supervision.
  • Valid Driver’s License and ability to pass USDA security background check.
  • Highly productive, self-starter, with a desire to make a long-term impact.
  • Ability to plan, design and implement hydrologic and vegetative restorations.

WORK ENVIRONMENT: Work involves a mix of office and outside field work. Frequent position changes, lifting, pushing, and pulling requirement more than 50 pounds on a regular basis, exposures not limited to heat, cold, and wet conditions, and use of the senses are necessary in this work.

REPORTS TO: This position reports to the District Administrator regularly to prioritize project workload commitments and to discuss issues pertaining to this position. This position works closely with the USDA NRCS District Conservationist.

CONDITIONS OF ANNOUNCEMENT: The Chisago SWCD reserves the right to extend or make changes to the content of this position announcement without notification and may at any time withdraw the announcement.

SELECTION PROCESS: Finalist for the interview process will be determined after initial screening and assessment of relevant qualifications provided in the materials submitted. Applicant(s) selected for the interview process will be contacted directly by the Chisago SWCD.


Application material is available at www.chisagoswcd.org or can be requested by emailing District Administrator Craig Mell at craig.mell@mn.nacdnet.net. Applicants must submit a cover letter, resume, and completed application by the closing date to:

Craig Mell, District Administrator

Chisago Soil & Water Conservation District

38814 Third Avenue

North Branch, MN 55056

Or Email: craig.mell@mn.nacdnet.net